CSU Names Hearst/Trustees' Award Winners

(July 7, 2003) The California State University has selected six student winners of the 2003/04 William R. Hearst/CSU Trustees’ Award for Outstanding Achievement. The systemwide award provides $3,000 scholarships to financially needy students who demonstrate superior academic performance and outstanding volunteer community service. These meritorious students have overcome profound personal challenges to achieve academic success. The winners, who will be honored at the July 15th Board of Trustees meeting, include

Anthony L. DeFont, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo: DeFont, raised by relatives when his mother was in prison and later killed, developed a strong work ethic and sense of obligation which powers his community volunteer work and campus activity. He is a mechanical engineering major.

Cameron Fitzsimmons, San Francisco State: Overcoming a life-threatening condition, Fitzsimmons has blazed across campus as a classics student and prospective teacher. A gifted language student who studied Latin in Rome, he tutors English as a Second Language students on campus and teaches Latin at a local private school.

Jaime Gonzalez, Cal State San Bernardino: Gonzalez, a clinical psychology major, was drawn to his field of study by a childhood tragedy, the eye-witnessed murder of his mother by his father. He has interned at a hospital chemical dependency unit and assists at a community counseling center.

Sheba Kane, CSU Dominguez Hills: Kane took a chance on education, quitting her full-time job to fulfill her new dream of becoming an English as a Second Language teacher and sharing her experiences with her students. A social activist, she recently earned her bachelor’s in African Studies at the university.

Benjamin Seigler, CSU Chico: A high-school dropout who, like his family, fell into drug addiction, Seigler turned his life around, began helping teenagers at a local rehabilitation center and went back to school. He is currently a psychology major working to become a professional therapist.

Shannon Starr, Cal State Northridge: Active in the deaf community on campus and off, Starr overcame a lingering, deadly illness that at one time left her wheelchair-bound. A linguistics major, Starr volunteers as a deaf interpreter--she is nationally certified--and is seeking to become a university professor.

The awards are funded by personal contributions from the CSU Board of Trustees and an endowment created by the Hearst Foundation. Since its inception in 1974, the award has honored ninety-two students. For more information about the students, please contact the campuses. For more general information, go here.

Contact: Clara Potes-Fellow, cpotes-fellow@calstate.edu, (562) 951-4806

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Last Updated: 7 July 2003

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